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Government & Politics:: How to contact your elected officials

Government information & participation

From Cañada College to Congress: Rep. Anna Eshoo

Congresswoman Anna Eshoo, Cañada College, class of '75, now represents the area where she lives and attended college. She earned an Associate of Arts in English from Cañada College within a decade of the college's official opening. Later she served as a San Mateo County Supervisor for ten years.

Read more about Congresswoman Eshoo and her political career and sign up for email updates from Congresswoman Eshoo here, or visit her Palo Alto office at 698 Emerson St. Mondays through Fridays, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Contact Congresswoman Eshoo at 650-323-2984, 408-245-2339 or 831-335-2020. Visit her website to follow Congresswoman Eshoo on Twitter or Facebook.

How to Get Help

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Cañada College Library Redwood City, CA
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Monday-Thursday, 8 a.m. - 8 p.m.
Friday, 8 a.m. - 3 p.m.
Saturday, 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.

Text Message: (650) 535-8398
Phone: (650) 306-3480

Local government: City councils and county supervisors

Consider attending a local government meeting for a class project or paper. Whether a dog park is open on Sundays is one of the many decisions local government officials make that affect your neighborhood. Attend a city council or planning commission meeting to hear the discussions behind each decision with an outcome you can see.

  • County boards of supervisors and city councils usually meet twice a month on the same day of the week, such as the second and fourth Thursdays, or the first and third Tuesdays.
  • These bodies are an odd number, usually five but sometimes seven, so that votes do not end in a tie.
  • County boards of supervisors meet during the day, all day, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and city councils meet in the evening, often from 7 to 9 p.m.

State elected officials

Who represents you in government? What do they vote on? Find out who to contact in the California state assembly and state senate.

Federal elected representatives

Congressional representatives serve two-year terms, and senators, six-year terms. To find current congressional representatives and senators by state, check this Library of Congress website. Check the correct form of address for elected officials on this PLS page.

Can you pass a citizenship test?

Petition the US government for change. Yes, you!

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Anyone can write and circulate a petition to take action or to change laws. Go to this White House website to sign an existing petition or to create a new one. To create a new petition;

  • Think of a title that expresses your goal in 120 or fewer characters.
  • Choose one to three tags - Civil Rights & Equality, Foreign Policy or Immigration are examples - that fit your petition.
  • Write a description in 800 words or fewer of your cause.

Gather 100,000 signatures in 30 days. Once your petition has 150 signatures, it will become available on the White House website.

Read this Washington Post article, "Yes, signing those petitions makes a difference" for more about citizen petitions' effect on our government.

What are we voting on? Find out here.

File a Freedom of Information Act request

Can't find the government information you are looking for but believe it exists somewhere? First, do a thorough search for the information or report you want. If you can't find it, and you think it exists, you can file a Freedom of Information Act request here.

Adjunct Faculty Librarian

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Cynthia McCarthy
Cañada College Library
Bldg. 9, 3rd floor